Άρειος Πάγος: Παράνομη η υποχρεωτική μείωση ωραρίου και αποδοχών σε εργαζόμενους

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Το δικαστήριο έκρινε άκυρες τις απολύσεις επειδή οι εργαζόμενοι δεν δέχθηκαν να μετατραπεί η σύμβαση εργασίας τους από πλήρους σε μερικής απασχόλησης, με ανάλογη μείωση στο 1/2 των αποδοχών τους.

Ο Άρειος Πάγος, απλώνοντας πέπλο προστασίας στα εργασιακά δικαιώματα, έκρινε παράνομη και συνεπώς άκυρη την απόλυση τριών εργαζομένων που έγινε από την εργοδότρια εταιρεία επειδή οι απασχολούμενοι σε αυτήν δεν δέχθηκαν να μετατραπούν οι συμβάσεις εργασίας τους από πλήρους σε μερικής απασχόλησης, δηλαδή η 8ωρη ημερήσια εργασία τους να μετατραπεί σε 4ωρη, με μείωση στο 1/2 των αποδοχών τους.

Μάλιστα οι αρεοπαγίτες χαρακτήρισαν «προσχηματικό» τον ισχυρισμό της εργοδότριας εταιρείας ότι «οι απολύσεις έγιναν για οικονομικοτεχνικούς λόγους» και την υποχρέωσε να καταβάλει στους απολυθέντες μισθούς υπερημερίας, δηλαδή τους μισθούς που εργαζόμενοι έχασαν για όσο χρόνο δεν απασχολήθηκαν λόγω της παράνομης απόλυσής τους. Σε αυτές μάλιστα τις περιπτώσεις, εάν ο εργοδότης δεν επαναπασχολήσει τους ακύρως απολυθέντες μετά την έκδοση της δικαστικής απόφασης, η υπερημερία του συνεχίζεται.

Το 2009 Ανώνυμη Εταιρεία που δραστηριοποιείται στον τομέα της επίγειας εξυπηρέτησης αεροσκαφών προσέλαβε τρεις χειριστές ανυψωτικών μηχανημάτων με συμβάσεις εξαρτημένης εργασίας αορίστου χρόνου και καθεστώς πλήρους απασχόλησης. Δηλαδή, οι εν λόγω χειριστές εργάζονταν επί οκτάωρο ημερησίως για πέντε ημέρες την εβδομάδα, με μηνιαίο μισθό (μεικτό) από 1.800 έως 1.850 ευρώ. Ωστόσο, τον Δεκέμβριο του 2012 δύο διευθυντικά στελέχη της εν λόγω επιχείρησης ανακοίνωσαν ότι ο κύκλος εργασιών της είχε περιοριστεί, αλλά η εταιρεία είχε εκπονήσει πρόγραμμα εργασίας που θα επέτρεπε τη διατήρηση όλων των θέσεων εργασίας υπό την προϋπόθεση της μετατροπής των συμβάσεων εργασίας από πλήρους σε μερικής απασχόλησης.

Στη συνέχεια τα διευθυντικά στελέχη κάλεσαν έναν-έναν τους εργαζομένους και τους είπαν ξεκάθαρα ότι «είτε θα αποδέχονταν τη μετατροπή των συμβάσεών τους από πλήρους σε μερικής απασχόλησης (από οκτάωρο σε τετράωρο) με ανάλογη μείωση των αποδοχών τους, είτε θα απολύονταν».

Οι τρεις εργαζόμενοι αρνήθηκαν τη μετατροπή των συμβάσεών τους και απάντησαν ότι η μεταβολή αυτή ήταν βλαπτική για εκείνους, ενώ παράλληλα είπαν ότι οι λειτουργικές ανάγκες της επιχείρησης για την ειδικότητά τους δεν είχαν μειωθεί, αλλά ήταν σταθερές, και ότι αυτές δεν μπορούσαν να εξυπηρετηθούν από απασχολούμενους με συμβάσεις μερικής απασχόλησης. Μάλιστα, αντιπρότειναν ως ηπιότερο μέτρο, προκειμένου να αποφευχθεί η απόλυσή τους, την εκ περιτροπής εργασία, η οποία ναι μεν θα οδηγούσε σε μεγαλύτερη μείωση των αποδοχών τους (έως και 80%), πλην όμως θα είχε τον προσωρινό χαρακτήρα των 9 μηνών, όπως προβλέπει η νομοθεσία.

Παρ’ όλα αυτά η εταιρεία προχώρησε στις απολύσεις, καταβάλλοντας τη νόμιμη αποζημίωση, επικαλούμενη ότι, λόγω της μείωσης του κύκλου των εργασιών της (οικονομικοτεχνικοί λόγοι), αυτός ήταν ο μοναδικός τρόπος να αντιμετωπίσει τις οικονομικές δυσκολίες. Σύμφωνα με τους αρεοπαγίτες, ο ισχυρισμός αυτός της εταιρείας «δεν αποδείχθηκε βάσιμος» και αυτό γιατί, όπως προέκυψε, και ανεξάρτητα από ενδεχόμενη γενική μείωση του κύκλου εργασιών της, οι ανάγκες της ήταν «τουλάχιστον σταθερές και δεν δικαιολογούσαν άνευ άλλου τινός τη μερική απασχόληση των τριών εργαζομένων».

Κατόπιν αυτών, οι αρεοπαγίτες ανέφεραν: «Αποδείχθηκε ότι η καταγγελία της σύμβασης εργασίας (σ.σ.: απόλυση) έγινε λόγω μη αποδοχής απ’› αυτούς της εργοδοτικής πρότασης για μερική απασχόληση, ήτοι κατά παράβαση του άρθρου 2 παράγραφος 8 του νόμου 3846/2010, και επομένως είναι άκυρη».

Σε άλλο σημείο της απόφασης αναφέρεται ότι οι καταγγελίες των συμβάσεων είναι άκυρες «διότι έγιναν εξαιτίας του ότι αυτοί (σ.σ.: οι εργαζόμενοι) δεν δέχθηκαν την πρόταση για μετατροπή τους από πλήρους σε μερικής απασχόλησης και όχι στους προβαλλόμενους από την Ανώνυμη Εταιρεία οικονομικοτεχνικούς λόγους».

Παράλληλα, το Β2 Εργατικό Τμήμα του Αρείου Πάγου επικαλείται έγγραφο του Σώματος Επιθεώρησης Εργασίας στο οποίο σημειώνεται ότι «οι συμβάσεις τους καταγγέλλονται το αμέσως επόμενο διάστημα μετά την πρόταση μετατροπής των συμβάσεών τους σε μερικής απασχόλησης, πράγμα που ενισχύει την επιχειρηματολογία τους ότι η άρνησή τους να αποδεχθούν την πρόταση της επιχείρησης οδήγησε σε καταγγελία των συμβάσεών τους».

Ο Αρειος Πάγος απέρριψε την αίτηση της εταιρείας με την οποία αυτή ζητούσε να αναιρεθεί η απόφαση του Εφετείου Αθηνών που είχε δικαιώσει τους τρεις απολυθέντες, επισημαίνοντας ότι η πρότασή της προς τους τρεις εργαζομένους για μετατροπή των συμβάσεών τους σε μερικής απασχόλησης, για «οικονομικοτεχνικούς λόγους», ήταν «προσχηματική».

Στους απολυθέντες επιδικάστηκαν μισθοί υπερημερίας συν τους νόμιμους τόκους υπερημερίας. Στον μεν πρώτο το ποσό των 4.753 ευρώ για το πρώτο τετράμηνο και 1.595 ευρώ μηνιαίως από εκεί και πέρα, στον δεύτερο 6.000 ευρώ για το πρώτο τετράμηνο και 2.013 μηνιαίως από εκεί και πέρα, και τέλος στον τρίτο 4.495 ευρώ για το πρώτο τετράμηνο και 1.159 μηνιαίως από εκεί και μετά.

Πηγή: protothema.gr

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